[License-discuss] [Non-DoD Source] Re: Resources to discourage governments from bespoke licenses?

Karan, Cem F CIV USARMY CCDC ARL (USA) cem.f.karan.civ at mail.mil
Fri Feb 28 19:26:19 UTC 2020

On  Friday, February 28, 2020 12:37 PM Thorsten Glaser wrote:
> To: Karan, Cem F CIV USARMY CCDC ARL (USA) via License-discuss <license-discuss at lists.opensource.org>
> Karan, Cem F CIV USARMY CCDC ARL (USA) via License-discuss dixit:
> >But as it currently stands, I don’t know if I’m exposing both the USG
> >**and users of my work** if I use a standard license when some of the
> >clauses don’t apply.
> I’m publishing digital editions of music from composers dead for long enough their works are in the Public Domain.
> I don’t know beforehand whether I have any copyright protection in these editions. Arrangements would be clear, but an attempted
> faithful transcription is hard to sell, on the other hand there’s precedent (in my legislation) for protection of musical engraving.

OK, but assume that someone that decides to sue you; how much money could they net from suing you for your work?  Would it be worth the time and trouble to do so?  What about suing users of your work?  Is it worth it, and would they have a case?

The US Government has a lot of money, and with money can come lawsuits.  These are not only expensive to fight, they can also have a chilling effect on both the use of, and publication of, Open Source software by the US Government.  I personally want to avoid that kind of problem.  (In the earlier discussions on the mailing list, I mentioned the [Rambus](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rambus#Lawsuits) litigation as a motivating example).

> I’m dealing with it as follows: I put into the footer…
> 	© (if applicable) 2020 mirabilos; published under … licence … and the precise licence terms in the metadata.
> This should be clear enough. Of course, it’s a nōn-copyleft licence, but AIUI you were considering CC0 as well, so perhaps it helps.

I believe we're still going with CC0.  I transferred my duties as the Open Source person to another person some time ago, so I'm not following everything as closely as I once was.

Cem Karan

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